News and Events


Sawyer_SusanAdolescence is supposed to be the healthiest of times in our lives. But open any newspaper and you’re likely to find an article about the health problems of today’s youth. Whether it’s drugs or alcohol-fuelled violence, obesity, cyberbullying or sexting, you will most likely come away thinking this generation is in jeopardy. So what is going on?

Read more from Professors George Patton and Susan Sawyer in The photo georgeConversation at

Congratulations to Dot Henning

Dots front page IJSA March 2014Dot Henning is congratulated for her efforts in leading new research into the sexually transmitted infection Mycoplasma genitalium in young people experiencing homelessness who access care at the Young People’s Health Service (YPHS) that is run by the Centre for Adolescent Health.

The study offered STI screening (Chlamydia, Gonorrhea and Mycoplasma Genitalium) to asymptomatic young people accessing primary level care at YPHS for health concerns other than sexual and reproductive health. Of the sixty young people tested, 8 tested positive for Mycoplasma Genitalium and 10 for Chlamydia, and three testing positive for both. Mycoplasma Genitalium is increasingly recognized as an important STI, and this study provides important data to the prevalence of this STI amongst marginalized youth. Additionally, this study highlights the complex health needs of this population, and supports the need for comprehensive primary health care.The research findings have just been published in the March 2014 edition of the International Journal of STD & AIDS with the article gaining a mention on the journal’s front cover. Dr Peter Azzopardi (Research fellow, Centre for Adolescent Health), Clinical Nurse Consultant Donna Eade and Youth Health Nurse Alison Langstone (previously) from YPHS, and Dr Alex Marceglia and Nurse Practitioner Alison Bean-Hodges from the Sexual Health Service at the Royal Women’s Hospital provided valuable assistance with the study.

Free on-line learning modules on AYA cancer


The Centre for Adolescent Health in collaboration with the University of Melbourne and ONTrac at Peter Mac Victorian Adolescent and Young Adult Cancer Service is celebrating the launch of two online learning modules on cancer care for adolescents and young adults (AYA). The modules have been created using a novel method of online learning developed out of Harvard Medical School known as spaced education, where courses are comprised entirely of multiple choice questions and answers delivered to the learner’s email inbox at regular intervals. The approach is backed by a strong evidence base and has been found to improve knowledge acquisition, increase long-term knowledge retention and effectively change behaviour.

 “Learners receive two questions every other day, which can be accessed via desktop computer, tablet or mobile phone,” explains Project Coordinator Sam Van Staalduinen. “You receive immediate feedback on your responses along with corresponding evidence-based information, key messages and freely available resources. It’s about delivering short bursts of information at a time and place that suits the learner- the approach allows people to enhance their understanding of issues relating to young people with cancer and develop greater confidence in working with this unique patient group through a fun approach to learning that only takes a few minutes a day.” Upon completion of each module, learners also gain access to a website containing all of the information and resources for future reference.

 Cancer Care for Adolescents and Young Adults Part I and II are freely available and aimed at clinical and non-clinical professionals working with young people with cancer, or anyone with a professional interest in the field. Click here for more information or visit to enrol (best viewed in a modern browser such as Firefox or Safari).










Truth about CATS has won an award!

The Truth About CATS was awarded the Warren Sturgis Motion Media AwardCATS_Project_identifier_200 at the BioCommunications Association (USA) BioImages 2013 awards.

BioImages is an annual visual media competition that showcases the finest still, graphics and motion media work in the life sciences and medicine. Entries are evaluated by a distinguished panel of judges based on their impact, clarity, scientific content, technique, lighting, image quality, presentation, creativity, originality and effective use of the medium to fulfill its purpose. Best of Show, Award of Excellence, and Citation of Merit awards, in addition to five sponsored Merit Awards, are given in three visual media divisions: Still, Graphics and Motion. Winners are announced at the BioImages Opening Reception and Awards Presentation, held each year in conjunction with the association’s annual meeting.

Click on the link for the award winners.

2000 Stories in the news

Professor Susan Sawyer was interviewed for the Melbourne Voice by Annie Rahilly and talked about the new research being done by Professor Patton and his team at the Centre for Adolescent Health looking at the health of future generations. 

The full article in the Voice can be found here.